Tag Archives: Talks at Google

News You Can Use: 3/29/2017

  • Is This the End of Sears?

    It’s hard to tell whether Sears has fallen victim to the challenges of every other department store in an era when customers prefer low prices and online shopping, or if some of its troubles have been caused by bad management choices. An in-depth report by Crain’s Chicago Business a few years ago found a toxic and dysfunctional corporate environment at the failing company. Questions also surround CEO Eddie Lampert’s obsession with shareholder value (he’s the largest shareholder), and the questionable way the company has been spinning off companies and borrowing from Lampert’s hedge fund. The company recently settled a lawsuit, for $40 million, by some of its shareholders that alleged Lampert stood to benefit in a deal which spun off Sears’ best stores.


  • Why GE is winning the war for tech talent

    Ruh and his colleagues are wooing elite engineers with the promise of getting the chance to crack game-changing challenges. But GE made a crucial move in 2013 when it insourced talent acquisition and hired several recruiters who had software domain expertise, says Jennifer Waldo, GE Digital’s chief human resources officer. “They speak the software language and know the business and technology deeply,” Waldo says.

    These recruiters, many of who came from technology companies, began hunting for candidates at tech companies. They spiced up the compensation packages with bonuses and equity, a rarity in the industrial sector. And they played up the fact that successful GE leaders often leapfrog across the company’s business lines on their way up the company ladder.


  • Andreas Weigend: “Data for the People”
  • How to terminate an employee with an “irreplaceable” skill

    Once you have solved the short-term problem, don’t repeat the mistake. Make sure that you cross-train someone in your organization on every job. This will require you to document the tasks your organization does and keep records on who’s qualified to do each job.

    Document your processes. In addition to implementing cross-training, write down the specific steps required to do every job in your organization. Documenting processes isn’t sexy, and no one is going to pay you a nickel more because you have done it, but there are several major advantages to doing this work.


  • Why you should create a music playlist for your next meeting

    Propel music. If you want to get people ready for action, play “propel music,” says Frank, who likes to use “It’s Your Thing” by the Isley Brothers. “This is usually done at the end of the presentation to get to the climax,” he says. “It feels very triumphant.” It also plays into science, Frank adds. “When you listen to propel music, oxytocin is being released as you’re building up to the arch,” he says. “It’s the inspiration hormone that makes us feel open to new ideas, wanting to be better and do better.”


Photo: Jordan Whitfield

Tagged , , ,

Video: Never Split the Difference

sn_oldcar_Christopher Windus

Everything we’ve previously been taught about negotiation is wrong: people are not rational; there is no such thing as ‘fair’; compromise is the worst thing you can do; the real art of negotiation lies in mastering the intricacies of No, not Yes. These surprising tactics—which radically diverge from conventional negotiating strategy—weren’t cooked up in a classroom, but are the field-tested tools FBI agents used to talk criminals and hostage-takers around the world into (or out of) just about any scenario you can imagine.

In NEVER SPLIT THE DIFFERENCE: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It, former FBI lead international kidnapping negotiator Chris Voss breaks down these strategies so that anyone can use them in the workplace, in business, or at home.

Photo: Christopher Windus

Tagged , ,

Video: Negotiating the Nonnegotiable

sn_sunflower_Skitter Photo

From the founder and director of The Harvard International Negotiation Program comes a guide to successfully resolving your most emotionally charged conflicts. In this landmark book, world-renowned negotiation expert Daniel Shapiro presents a groundbreaking, practical method to reconcile your most contentious relationships and untangle your toughest conflicts.

Photo: Skitter Photos

Tagged , ,

Video: Better Living Through Criticism

sn_doughnut_Thomas Kelley

My old man must have been on to something…

Few could explain, let alone seek out, a career in criticism. Yet what A.O. Scott shows in Better Living Through Criticism is that we are, in fact, all critics: because critical thinking informs almost every aspect of artistic creation, of civil action, of interpersonal life. With penetrating insight and warm humor, Scott shows that while individual critics–himself included–can make mistakes and find flaws where they shouldn’t, criticism as a discipline is one of the noblest, most creative, and urgent activities of modern existence.

Using his own film criticism as a starting point–everything from his infamous dismissal of the international blockbuster The Avengers to his intense affection for Pixar’s animated Ratatouille–Scott expands outward, easily guiding readers through the complexities of Rilke and Shelley, the origins of Chuck Berry and the Rolling Stones, the power of Marina Abramovich and ‘Ode on a Grecian Urn.’ Drawing on the long tradition of criticism from Aristotle to Susan Sontag, Scott shows that real criticism was and always will be the breath of fresh air that allows true creativity to thrive. “The time for criticism is always now,” Scott explains, “because the imperative to think clearly, to insist on the necessary balance of reason and passion, never goes away.”

Photo: Thomas Kelley

Tagged , ,

Video: How to Have a Bad Career

sn_computersupplies_Patryk Dziejma

Renowned computer scientist David Patterson came to Mountain View to provide advice that, as he puts it, “I wish I had been given at the start of my career.”

An entertaining and engaging presenter, Prof. Patterson takes us through a number of tongue-in-cheek examples of how to sink a career in academics and elsewhere. He also provides great tips on how how to steer clear of these mistakes and build a career that is both successful and satisfying.

David Patterson wrote the book Computer Architecture: A Quantitative Approach with John Hennessy and helped lead UC Berkeley research projects Reduced Instruction Set Computers (RISC), Redundant Arrays of Inexpensive Disks (RAID), and Network of Workstations (NOW). He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Sciences, the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame, both AAAS organizations, and President of ACM.

Photo: Patryk Dziejma

Tagged , ,